Theories Of Constitutional Jurisprudence Essay

770 words - 4 pages

Constitutional jurisprudence is a way that the court decides whether something is constitutional or not. It forms a basis for the justices to reach a conclusion regarding different cases that they encounter. Three main theories pertain to the constitutional jurisprudence; original intent theory, living constitution theory and plain text meaning theory. Among these the living constitution theory is the best because it takes into account the present day situation and makes decision according to that.
The original intent theory is based on “…what (did) those who originally wrote the constitution actually mean” to decide if something is constitutional or not. In other words, according to the ...view middle of the document...

Thus, this theory is irrelevant in the number of such aspects.
Next, the plain text meaning theory is merely based on what is written in the actual constitution. Justices interpret according to what the constitution literally says and apply that. This implies that the text is interpreted as it is, even though if that is not what the father of the constitution meant or even if it’s unfair. Therefore, this theory has its pitfall as “…constitution is relatively short document and it’s not clear.” Furthermore, it is challenging to evaluate what exactly the fathers were trying to say because there are always numerous ways to interpret something. For example, according to the Fourth Amendment, unreasonable search and seizure is prohibited but the definition of the word “unreasonable” will differ from person to person. What is unreasonable to a person may be reasonable to another person so there is no definiteness on what the founding fathers meant by unreasonable. Also, the theory does not take into account what the constitution intends to say. Thus, there is a line drawn on what extent it can be interpreted as plain text meaning.

Lastly, the living constitution theory is based on “…how you feel the nation has evolved.” It is based on what experiences you had. Different people have different experiences throughout...

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